He is Risen!


Cristi anax, se prvton, epei logon heri dvka,
dhnaion katecwn, fqegxom apo stomatwn,

(Dactylic hexameter, and pentameter.)

O Christ the King! since breath pent up so long

I have outpoured, Thou first shalt be my song;

May this my word, the current of my mind,

If lawful thus to speak, acceptance find,

And unto Thee as holy incense rise

Of holiest priest, a grateful sacrifice!

The Father’s Brightness, Word of the Great Mind,

Who cannot be by power of speech defined,

High Light of highest Light, the Only Son,

Image and Seal of the Immortal One,

Without beginning; from same Fount of Light

With the Great Spirit; infinite in might:

All-glorious Thou, and Author of all good:

From age to age Thy truth hath firmly stood.

Enthroned Thou reignest high in heaven above,

Almighty Breath of Mind and Lord of Love.

Throughout this framèd universe Divine

Whatever is, or shall be, all is Thine:

Thou madest all, to all Thou givest life,

And all Thou guidest: nowhere fault or strife,

Nor error in Thy workmanship is found:

The whole in willing chain to Thee is bound.

Thou laid’st the world’s foundation: and Thy nod

All things obey, and own their Sovereign God.

For Thee the lofty sun, the king of day,

Quenching the stars, holds on his fiery way.

For Thee, for so Thou bidst, the eye of night,

The moon, waxes and wanes, full orb of light.

For Thee the belt of heaven, all-dancing ring,

And seasons kindly mingling, laugh and sing.

For Thee the fixèd stars and planets shine

In course, and speak Thy wisdom all divine.

Thy light they are, the heavenly minds that be,

All sing on high the glorious Trinity.

Man is Thy glory too, angel below,

Here placed to sing, O Light, Thy beauteous glow.

Immortal, fleshless, glory’s highest ray,

Who mortal flesh yet took’st, man’s woes to stay,

For Thee I live, for Thee my songs arise,

For Thee I am a breathing sacrifice;

For this, of all things once possessed by me,

Alone remains, and this I give to Thee.

I tie my tongue, and loose it at Thy will;

In either, what Thou wouldst may I fulfil,

Speak what is right, nor think aught else beside:

From mire select the pearl, with Thee my Guide;

Gold from the sand, the rose from thorny brake,

From straw-encumbered ears the pure grain take.

To Thee, O Christ, this wreath of uttered praise,

As firstfruits of my loving toil, I raise.

For from the dead, with whom He mingled lay,

Great Christ arose, upon this gladsome day;

Gates of grim Hades He did open fling;

And broke death’s power, and robbed him of his sting;

Rushed from the tomb, appeared to speaking men,

For whom, once born, He died and rose again;

That we new-born might rise, from death set free,

And ever live, ascending Lord, with Thee.

This day glad Heaven with acclamation rings,

And choir angelic crowning anthem sings.

This day my closèd lips I loose in song

To Thee, to whom my lute and breath belong.

Of mind to Mind, of word to the true Word,

I here have offered what I could afford:

Hereafter, if He will, I hope to bring

To the Great Spirit worthier offering.”

By Gregory Nazianzen, fourth century elder

I do not have a tune, although Finlandia instantly came to mind as I read the words, and it does work pretty well.

Earliest Greek Christian Poets

Translated into English Verse

Postscript: I include this because I like these lyrics. Our family celebrates the Resurrection daily, with a special emphasis each Sunday. The unique historical event of the Resurrection is just too precious to us to limit the celebration to one day a year.

This post is linked at Spiritual Sundays

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Marbury vs. Madison

It was THEN.

Marbury vs. Madison, 1803. The Supreme Court granted itself the authority to consider cases about the constitutionality of legislative and/or executive decisions, and when deemed by the court, and therefore by the OPINIONS of those on court, unconstitutional, to overturn them.

Judicial review is over 200 years old. I can’t decide whether this should encourage optimism or pessimism about the state of the things in the USA, but pessimism is winning the argument.

(Digression: Half of you probably know all of this all ready. Oh, well. Humour me. Half of you probably didn’t know but don’t necessarily care. Oh, well. [comment deleted by shocked Deputy Headmistress].)

The interesting thing is that the case was not to meant to be a revolution of any kind at all. It was a political move by the Federalist Party, out of power in Congress and the White House, but determined, nonetheless, to have their way.

(I know. It sounds so hauntingly familiar. Humanity will always be humanity, there is nothing new under the sun.)

No doubt you are all familiar with John Adam’s “midnight judges?” Thomas Jefferson didn’t like these judges, and his secretary of state James Madison was forbidden to deliver the commissions. Chief Justice Marshall was a diehard opponent of Jefferson and when one of the men whose commission was being refused filed suit to have a writ of mandamus delivered to Madison, directing him to deliver the commission, Marshall was determined that Marbury should win. So he found a way.

At this point I shall cease to burden you with the cumbersome explanations that are mine own, and let Mark R. Levin, author of “Men In Black: How the Supreme Court is Destroying America”, clear the waters for you.

“With a Republican majority elected to both houses of Congress in 1800, Marshall realized that Jefferson and his Republicans could denude the Supreme Court of authority and that he, as chief justice, could be impeached and removed from office. Marshall understood that, in the Marbury case, if he ordered Secretary of State Madison to deliver Marbury’s commission to office, Jefferson would order Madison to ignore the Supreme Court’s writ, and the Court’s authority would be seriously weakened. Marshall was also concerned that he not be seen as protecting the interests of Federal jurists like Marbury, who had assumed his position as justice of the peace & had been hearing cases and issuing judgments for a year.”

My turn, cause I think I could get this bit over quicker. Marshall’s argument in court was that, since Marbury had already been confirmed and nominated to his position, he had, essentially, a property right to the position. (I thought this was vedy intewesting, and Mr. Levin says it wasn’t that uncommon of an argument at the time.) So. Marbury’s constitutional rights were being violated and Marshall claimed that “…the Court had a responsibility to set aside acts of Congress that violate principles enumerated in the Constitution.” (Mark Levin’s words, once again.)

And that is pretty much both the end of the story and the beginning of the story.

In Marshall’s defense, as obnoxious as his acts may have been, he could not have known what a dangerous precedent he was setting. By the same token, those who wrote the Constitution and made the courts independent of the other two branches, and most importantly, the votes of the people, could not known how tyrannical such a court would become.

We have, in consequence: Marbury vs. Madison, the Dred Scott case, Roe vs. Wade, Everson vs. Board of Education, and Terri Schiavo.

“This member of the Government was at first considered as the most harmless and helpless of all its organs. But it has proved that the power of declaring what the law is…by sapping and mining slyly and without alarm the foundations of the Constitution, can do what open force would not dare attempt.”
Thomas Jefferson

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A Quiet Day

…Split pea soup is simmering (I do hope I haven’t mussed it up. I usually don’t, but there are occasions where somehow it goes Completely Awry and the poor Common Room inhabitants are left to reflect on the cheering fact that there are, at least, left overs in the fridge). I have finally completed “Jane Austen: Obstinate Heart.” It is a somewhat obstinate read as the author seems to do most of her biography by simply narrating Jane Austen’s letters. ugh. Why not read Austen’s letters? That is something I would be doing at the moment, but I am afraid they are in one of our poor unpacked boxes of books. At any rate, I think I shall be re-reading one of her books shortly.

A few days ago I finished reading “Hidden Art of Homemaking” by Edith Schaeffer (which I think I mentioned here). Although it was all rather good (although also occasionally repetitive) I found one passage in particular really grabbed my attention. I even copied it down in my regular journal, which is not something I am wont to do. Usually quotes go into my booklist journal, and Bible verses into my regular journal. This quote, however, is one I knew needed to be applied to my life… and soon. So here it is:
One person sleeps half the day, gets up looking like a half-dead duck, drags around with eyelids scarcely open, slurping coffee and leaving a mess all over the newly polished sink, leaves the bed unmade and a week of clothing in a heap on the bed, heaves a sigh and moans about what a drag life is, then prepares to sit and philosophize while you work. What is the effec this has on you? …You begin to feel tired, discouraged, irritated, frustrated and hopeless.”

My toes are still bruised. I am the Half-Dead Duck Type. 😛 Now, however, I am a Reforming Half-Dead Duck (does this make me a 3/4 Dead Duck?) and optimistic about the prospect of becoming a Fully Alive Duck.

Before I quit (gots to dust & vaccuum the hidey hole upstairs before supper): can anyone direct me to a site online with a photograph of Benjamin West’s Christ’s Rejection By the Elders? It was mentioned in the Jane Austen biography and I should like to see it. Edit: Thanks so much to the wonderful woman (you know who you are!) who sent me a link. You can see the picture here.

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Suggested reading

Much to think about on Polipundit today.

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George Felos introduced HB 2131?

Is that the gist of this article?.
HB 2131 is the bill in Florida that changed feeding tubes, by a stroke of law, into artificial life support. Not sure why a feeding tube for a person who can’t swallow (or, as in Terri’s case, swallows saliva all day long, but is forbidden by court order from actually being given so much as a sip of water to swallow) is any more artificial than, say, a bottle of baby formula, but there it is.

Am I understanding this correctly? George Felos, Michael Schiavo’s lawyer, accepted the Schiavo case, filed the petition to introduce the bill, and once it became law, the Schiavo case was heard in court.

The Anchoress says:

In that order. In April 1999 – House Bill 2131 was introduced in the Florida legislature by the Florida Elder Affairs & Long-Term Care Committee to amend Section 765 (Civil Rights) of the Florida Statutes. The amendments to Section 765.101 were the legal definition of “life prolonging procedures” to add: “INCLUDING ARTIFICIALLY PROVIDED SUSTENENCE AND HYDRATION, WHICH SUSTAINS, RESTORES, OR SUPPLANTS A SPONTANEOUS VITAL FUNCTION”.

It becomes law on October 1, 1999.

The Anchoress also tells us about a possible conflict of interest.
Whose been making campaign contributions to Judge Greer? Find out from the Anchoress.

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